Was Eagles' rookie TE Ingram a steal?

June, 1, 2009
6/01/09
11:45
AM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

 
  Hunter Martin/Getty Images
  Cornelius Ingram projects to be a dangerous receiving threat.

I thought the Eagles did a smart thing in waiting to take former Florida tight end Cornelius Ingram in the fifth round. Too many teams get caught up in drafting for need and end up selecting a player they're not that excited about.

Ingram's ACL injury ruined his senior year, but he has immense potential as a pass-catching tight end. He'll never be great at blocking, but he has the type of frame that will allow him to do an adequate job. The folks at Bleacher Report took a closer look at Ingram on Monday and did some comparisons with tight ends who were taken ahead of him. Leo Pizzini writes:

In 2009, Ingram has developed into a 245 pound monster standing at 6'4". Ingram was aware that NFL teams would be looking for tight ends that can block and make plays. He invested a great deal of time in improving his blocking skills as he finished rehabilitating his repaired knee.

Ingram is a quick and elusive pass catching tight end. His long arms and developing frame are imposing to any defender. A few months of work with offensive line wizards Andy Reid and Juan Castillo, and Cornelius Ingram will understand how to leverage his strength and athleticism in blocking situations.

In the OTAs, Ingram has been extremely impressive. His pass catching, route running and minimum contact blocking is heralded among the coaches. The truth to this story can only be known after they suit up in full gear and open up contact. Ingram had a slight set back in the second OTA with a contusion to his repaired knee. I expect this injury is unrelated to his 2008 season ender, but consider that there may be more small setbacks as he shakes off the rust and puts his body to the test this preseason.

In my opinion, Ingram will succeed at tight end because he is an athlete. The tight end position requires one of the most dynamic skill sets on the field. Big, strong, fast and well rounded athletes make the best tight ends.

I might add Ingram to our offseason phone interview list if anyone's interested.

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